Every so often I get the urge to build something that serves no real purpose other than being fun to build. This was one of these times.

Years ago, party parrot was brought on to our Slack at Rainforest. Since then it has vastly enriched our emoji vocabulary, allowing us to express a wide range of emotions. If someone posts something mildly interesting :slowparrot: is the appropriate reaction, however, when you’re unreasonably excited about it :ultrafastparrot: is the way to go. Sometimes we have to freeze code releases for a while, which we signal with the :snowflake: emoji and when it’s time to start releasing again it’s :shipitparrot: time. I lead the science team, so I can’t believe I’ve only just discovered :scienceparrot: today, but I foresee a bright future for it on our channel. It might sound ridiculous, but that’s just the way it is. :dealwithitparrot:

The ever-expanding arsenal of party parrots triggered an alert in my head: there has to be a better, more scalable way! I should be able to make the world a little better[1] and create a way for people to make party-parrot-style emojis out of anything! And so partyasterisk.com was born. You can use it to turn any image you have into a party-style image.


Building it was really fun: it’s running on Docker on Heroku, uses the latest version of Python, has all the scientific python libs and has a CD set up on CircleCI (it’s a subset of the stack I’ve recently described, which we use to deploy dynamic Python workers at Rainforest). It’s such a joy to be able to over-engineer a greenfield project to your hearts content without worrying about it making sense. Pure play! And the ability to troll your CEO is just the icing on the cake.

My plans for it currently include continuing to unreasonably optimize it, add recursion, rewrite it in Rust and deploy on Kubernetes. Check back soon!

[1] Or a little different, at least, depending on your stance on emojis.